MIT Sloan New MBA Application 2015-2016 mitlogo2

Yes! It’s spring and MBA essay writing is in the air….Columbia, Stanford and now MIT have released new essay questions  for the 2016 application cycle.

MIT, like other top schools, has trimmed its essay requirement down and now requests only one essay from applicants. Students who are invited to interview will be asked to submit a second personal essay.

So the good news is you only need to write one essay now. The bad news is that while preparing for your interview you’ll also need to write another essay. Applicants have no choice but to play by MIT’s rules, so let’s get started:

MIT MBA application essay:  Tell us about a recent success you had: How did you accomplish this? Who else was involved? What hurdles did you encounter? What type of impact did this have? (500 words or fewer).

Here are some tips on what MIT is really looking for:

Recent Experience:

While the guidelines don’t specifically define “recent” it is often considered to refer to roughly the last three years. You probably shouldn’t write about an event from college or high school.

 Work or extracurricular?

Applicants often wonder whether they should use a story from their professional life or their private activities. Usually, it’s best to focus on your work; your admission to business school will be based largely on your professional achievements. All your wonderful activities outside of work (soup kitchen, reading to the blind, etc.) will certainly strengthen your application, but they’re not the core of your candidacy. Only if your resume is already super impressive (many promotions, big impact on your firm) and if you are confident that your recommendation letters are going to do justice to your outstanding work performance, should you talk about community work or other personal achievements.

This is a relatively short essay. MIT Sloan is doing its best to guide you to the important parts of your story. They want to hear about the challenges you overcame, how you have worked with colleagues, and how you achieved success. What was your impact on the organization, on people in the organization, on clients, on society, etc.

When MIT asks, “what type of impact did this have” it’s really asking, “why is this story important?” You don’t just need to show that you accomplished something; you also need to demonstrate why they should care.

For example, if you’re thinking about a story in which you were able to restructure a valuation model for a client be sure to demonstrate why this story is important. Is it important because you helped your company to build a relationship with a client? because your work allowed the client to raise more funds? because you drew needed attention to potential problems?

The best way to plan this essay is to consider several stories and their impact. If you can find a story that has big hurdles + big impact that’s great. Otherwise you will have to balance – maybe the actions were limited but the result meaningful.

 Failure can be success

Some schools, including Harvard, have asked in the past about “set-backs” and “failures.”. Many students have written wonderful essays about disasters or problems that turned into opportunities. This format might work here, but be sure it feels natural and not forced. Be careful to choose the best story to represent your strengths.

Last one: Keep the audience in mind

Think about MIT – what do you know about MIT? about its values? about the way it approaches leadership, people, and MBA training?

Let’s talk more about your chance of admission into MIT and your MBA profile. Fill out the form below and I will contact you within 24 hours.

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Other helpful tips about MBA admissions:

MIT MBA Application requirements

MIT MBA Application requirements